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Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s 2024–25 Departmental plan at a glance

A departmental plan describes a department’s priorities, plans and associated costs for the upcoming three fiscal years.

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Key priorities

The CNSC has 5 programs (plus Internal Services) for delivering on its core responsibility of nuclear regulation, fulfilling its mandate, and achieving its departmental results for 2024–25 and beyond. These are articulated in this year’s plan through 2 overarching themes: to be trusted and to be modern. The CNSC strives for regulatory efficiency throughout all these commitments by being risk-informed, flexible, fit for purpose and ensuring regulatory readiness.

The CNSC continues to build on its reputation as a trusted regulator, recognized domestically and internationally as independent, open and transparent, and as a credible source of scientific, technical and regulatory information. In 2024–25, the CNSC will:

  • build and maintain relationships with key stakeholders, Canadians and Indigenous Nations and Communities through several key projects and initiatives such as:
  • implementing the Regional Information and Monitoring Network for the Ottawa River Watershed (RIMNet)
  • providing opportunities through the Indigenous Stakeholder Capacity Fund
  • demonstrate independence and transparency in regulatory decision making by:
    • implementing public opinion research and polling to measure trust and understanding of its role as an independent regulator
    • further developing an organizational approach to transparency and providing internal guidance and criteria for the release of information
  • exercising leadership and influencing global efforts to promote and support global nuclear safety, security, and non-proliferation by:
    • implementing the 2024–29 International Strategy to internally guide and align its international work, optimize decision making on international related activities and maximize its global influence
    • continuing its commitment to supporting the efforts of the Ukrainian nuclear regulator to maintain safe and secure nuclear facilities
  • improve the accessibility of its data and information by:
    • improving and promoting its electronic consultation platform, Lets Talk Nuclear Safety
    • modernizing its website infrastructure and content to improve usability and reliability

The CNSC is committed to a modern approach to nuclear regulation using science- and evidence-based, risk-informed, and technically sound regulatory practices and regulatory framework that consider scientific uncertainties and evolving expectations. In 2024–25, the CNSC will:

  • regulate new nuclear technology through its entire lifecycle by:
    • continuing to address the regulatory implications of new nuclear technologies
    • continuing to manage the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada’s CNSC Small Modular Reactor Research Grant Initiative
  • harmonize nuclear regulation and safety standards where appropriate by:
    • participating in the International Atomic Energy Agency Nuclear Harmonization and Standardization Initiative and safety standards development
    • participating in relevant Nuclear Energy Agency Committees and Western European Nuclear Regulator’s Association activities
  • create an agile workforce that uses available technology provided to complete their work and is supported by common, consistent and flexible digital capabilities by:
    • continuing to implement changes to advance GC Workplace
    • launching new engagement tools and a new digital workspace

Refocusing Government Spending

In Budget 2023, the government committed to reducing spending by $14.1 billion over the next five years, starting in 2023–24, and by $4.1 billion annually after that.

As part of meeting this commitment, the CNSC is planning the following spending reductions.

  • 2024–25: $1.354 million
  • 2025–26: $1.855 million
  • 2026–27 and after: $2.54 million

The CNSC will achieve these reductions by:

  • reducing its reliance on strategic advisory firms (having previously reduced dependence on information technology contractors)
  • engaging in international nuclear activities virtually, where possible, after reviewing and rationalizing the extent of travel required in support of these obligations
  • reducing rent expenses and other administrative support costs after shifting toward a hybrid working model and implementing GC Workplace 2.0

The figures in this departmental plan reflect these reductions.

Regulatory efficiency

The CNSC always strives for regulatory efficiency throughout its work. This includes being flexible, risk informed and fit for purpose in how it conducts licensing and oversight of existing and new nuclear technologies (including environmental protection reviews).


A Departmental Results Framework consists of an organization’s core responsibilities, the results it plans to achieve, and the performance indicators that measure progress toward these results.

Nuclear regulation

Departmental results:

  • The environment is protected from releases from nuclear facilities and activities.
  • Canadians are protected from radiation resulting from nuclear facilities and activities.
  • Nuclear material and substances, facilities and activities are secure and used for peaceful purposes.
  • Canadians, including Indigenous peoples, have meaningful information about, and the opportunity to participate in, the nuclear regulatory process.

Planned spending: $121,694,342

Planned human resources: 653

The CNSC regulates the development, production and use of nuclear energy and substances to protect the health, safety, security of persons and the environment; implements Canada’s international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy; prevents unreasonable risk to national security; and disseminates objective scientific and regulatory information to members of the public. The CNSC maintains a regulatory framework and conducts licensing (including environmental protection reviews), compliance verification and enforcement. The CNSC is committed to building and maintaining the confidence of the public and Indigenous peoples through transparent, open and inclusive regulatory processes.

More information about nuclear regulation can be found in the full departmental plan.

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